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The Race of Toad and Deer

by Pat Mora

ISBN 0531087778 / 9780531087770 / 0-531-08777-8
Publisher Orchard Books
Language English
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Book summary

In this second book by the Latina pair, Pat Mora has created a poetic adaptation of the Maya version of the much-loved fable of the tortoise and the hare. The arrogant deer who boasts of his strength and speed is finally challenged to a race by the wily toad. While all the wondrous animals of the jungle - jaguar, tapir, armadillo and toucan - gathered around to watch, the toad makes a plan. He may not be as large as Venado, but he is very clever and has many friends to help him.

In the end, Sapo defeats the deer, proving the value of brain over brawn. This version of the story was passed down by Don Fernado Tesucun, a Maya-Itzaj man who worked on the excavations of the ruins of Tikal.

The rich and beautiful collaboration between Pat Mora and Domi perfectly exemplifies the value of artisits' retelling of stories from their own cultures. [via]